Pellegrini: Leicester tie will be ‘very difficult’
- 30 October 2013 23:22
- Posted by @markbooth_mcfc
Manuel Pellegrini has warned his team that Leicester are not to be taken lightly in the last eight of the Capital One Cup.
The Chilean was speaking after watching his side eventually get past Newcastle with a 2-0 victory after extra-time.
City were drawn away at Championship high flyers Leicester City after Nigel Pearson’s men upset Fulham with a thrilling 4-3 win on Tuesday night.
Pellegrini made ten changes to his line-up for the game at St James’ Park and he revealed that he was pleased with the result and the performance of his team.
"I'm not thinking it's an easy tie,” Pellegrini said.
“Leicester continue in this cup because they beat Fulham and that is not an easy team so we suppose we will have a very difficult match and if we want to win we will have to play very well.”
"It's important for my squad to have minutes to play, especially those who are not playing in the Premier League and Champions League."
“We played a very good game and deserved to win."
The 60-year old also found time to praise Costel Pantilimon, who kept his second clean sheet in two games this season, but gave no indication on who he'll select in goal for City's game against Norwich City on Saturday.
"Pantilimon has always had my trust and that of the team," Pellegrini asserted.
"He is a good player, that's why he is here. He may not have played too much because Joe Hart plays last year and this year but I trust him to play.
"I think for him and the team to keep a clean sheet today was important.
"He is a very good goalkeeper and he normally plays in the Capital One Cup and the FA Cup.
"This was a very important match for him.
"But I will start to think about the game against Norwich on Thursday. Today I was just thinking about winning this match."
"I think that we will talk tomorrow (about the team selection). One goalkeeper can play but the other will have our full support. We will think about it."
Meanwhile, Edin Dzeko has praised his teammates for making the most of their chance to shine, in Wednesday night’s Capital One Cup victory over Newcastle.
Dzeko played the full 90 minutes for the Sky Blues, making one assist before netting the second goal, and the Bosnian expressed his delight that he – and several other players – were able to showcase their talents, having failed to nail down a place in Manuel Pellegrini’s side in previous games.
“Against Newcastle, we got the chance to show what we can do,” he said. “Some of us hadn’t played in the last few games but we proved in that game that we deserve to play.
“We all worked very hard in pre-season and I think we deserved to win tonight. We want to get to the final in this competition – that’s definitely our target.”
Dzeko heaped praise on several of his teammates – especially the rotating cast of strikers at City's disposal.
“Negredo is a great player too and I think we work well together," he said.
"The same can be said for Aguero and Jovetic. There are four strikers and any of us can play."